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Canucks sign veteran defencemn Matt Irwin to one-year, two-way contract
By Faber7 months ago
The Vancouver Canucks are loading up on defencemen during day one of free agency.
After signing Carson Soucy and Ian Cole, the Canucks went back to the veteran well and signed 6’2″, 35-year-old, left-shot defenceman Matt Irwin to a one-year, two-way contract.
The former Nanaimo Clipper has had a long career in the NHL, totalling 461 games over 11 seasons. Irwan was born in Victoria and has played for the San Jose Sharks, Nashville Predators, Boston Bruins, Anaheim Ducks, Buffalo Sabres, and Washington Capitals throughout his NHL career.
Irwin brings some depth to the defence corps and is not coming in with a big contract hit due to his two-way contract. He will not count against the cap if he doesn’t make the Canucks. It’s a solid veteran for the AHL team if that’s where he ends up.
Last season, Irwin played in 61 games with the Capitals, notching two goals and adding three assists on the year. He doesn’t bring much in the offensive zone but was solid in his own zone last season on a weak Capitals team. He averaged 13:02 last season and wasn’t consistently used on Washington’s shorthanded unit.
Irwin falls into the mix with Christian Wolanin, Jack Rathbone, and Akito Hirose. These left-shot defencemen will be fighting for an NHL job at training camp and though Irwin is on the back nine of his career, he will create some internal competition at camp.
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In the end, this is a no-risk signing. Yeah, he’s 35 years old but he played in most of Washington’s games last season and should be looked at as a seventh or eighth defenceman for the Canucks. It’s always cool to see the team sign some local
kids men and you have to believe that this signing is an exciting thing for Irwin and his family.
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